“My goal is to stop your goal,” says hockey star Hannah Kitchen

Hannah with Team GB's Alex Danson.
Hannah with Team GB's Alex Danson.

Like many sports-mad youngsters, Hannah Kitchen dreams of rising through the ranks to represent her country.

However, the 15-year-old hockey player is already showing her potential after forcing her way into the Doncaster Hockey Club’s ladies first XI... aged just 15.

To date, Hannah has made eight appearances in the Women’s Conference North - hockey’s equivalent of football’s Championship - and is hoping to solidify her place in the team as action resumes next month following the winter break.

“My goal is to stop your goal,” is the motto the goalkeeper lives by when in action.

Covered in pads, wearing a helmet and being expected to be the one to throw her body in front of a goalbound strike doesn’t make the position the most appealing to all players.

But Sibsey girl Hannah doesn’t mind being the odd-one-out in the team.

“I like the fact that there are 10 outfield players and just one goalkeeper,” she told The Standard.

“I’m the last one there to stop the opposition scoring, and I like the fact I can be the one that gets in the way for them.”

Goalkeeping can be found in Hannah’s blood. She took up the sport after hearing her mum Jill’s stories of hockey tours when playing with Boston Hockey Club.

She joined Boston’s junior ranks and progressed through the youth set-up before moving to the Long Sutton club, where she was talent spotted and invited to go for trials at Doncaster.

Since then she hasn’t looked back, signing for the club just two days after her 15th birthday (the age she becomes eligible to play senior hockey).

As well as being promoted to the first team, Hannah has also enjoyed her first taste of indoor hockey.

Of course, her ambition is to force her way into the England team. From then on she wants to follow in the footsteps of Boston-born Team GB players Crista Cullen and Hannah Macleod and compete at an Olympic Games.

There is also the desire to lay in the Netherlands’ professional leagues.

But right now, her focus is on getting the grades at William Lovell School so she can work her way through to a hockey scholarship at university.